COVID-19 & pregnancy
The Corona pandemic has entered a next, less drastic phase. It is reassuring that most people, including pregnant women, do not become very ill from the current virus variant. Since February 2022, all nationally Covid measures have been abolished, and in our practice we’re back to our familiar way of working. In doing so, we follow the advice from the RIVM and professional associations for obstetricians and gynaecologists.
We think it is important that everyone feels comfortable and safe in our practice. That is why we ask you to follow the general advices to prevent the spread of the virus when you come to practice. We do not shake hands and in some situations may decide to wear a mouth cap and/or protective clothing.
A positive covid-test in your pregnancy
By definition, pregnant women are relatively young and usually healthy. The symptoms of a Corona-infection are therefore often mild and hospitalization is very rarely necessary. Pregnant women do not get Corona more often than their non-pregnant peers, but they do get sicker on average and are hospitalized more often because of their complaints. This applies in particular to pregnant women older than 35 or with a non-Western background, overweight pregnant women and pregnant women with underlying diseases such as diabetes or lung disorders. In addition, it is more difficult to resuscitate a pregnant woman with serious complications due to the growing belly.
It is not yet clear whether babies in the womb can get the corona virus from their mothers. This has been described incidentally and asks for further research but seems very rare. An infected person can transmit the virus to a newborn baby, but babies usually do not show any symptoms.
One of the symptoms of a Corona infection may be a fever. Long-term fever
(> 38.0°C measured rectally) in pregnancy can be harmful. That is why we advise to use paracetamol in case of fever, up to 8 tablets of 500mg per day. Is your temperature still higher than 38.0 ° C despite paracetamol? Then please contact either us or your GP. Social distancing, good (cough) hygiene, ventilating and regular hand washing remain the most important ways to prevent contamination.
Pregnant: to vaccinate or not to vaccinate...?
Since April 2021, all pregnant women are advised to get vaccinated against Corona. Large numbers of pregnant women worldwide have now been vaccinated and boostered against Corona. No short-term risks of the vaccination were seen for the pregnancy or the unborn child. Adverse long-term effects are unknown but are unlikely because the vaccine is broken down in your body after just a few days. Alltogether the advantages seem to outweigh the disadvantages and all women are now advised to get vaccinated, even if they have no additional risk factors. The advice is to vaccinate pregnant women with a so-called mRNA vaccine from Pfizer or Moderna. It is also recommended to use the booster vaccine.
Studies show that the antibodies produced by the mother also end up with the baby. In this way, the mother may be able to provide protection against corona to her baby. To achieve this, there must be an interval of at least 3 weeks between vaccination and delivery.
Since the Corona-vaccin, like other non-live vaccines, is unlikely to pass into breast milk, there does not seem to be any reason not to vaccinate breastfeeding women. There are reports that some lactating women were very much bothered by the injection in their arm, armpit and breast. Just to be sure, you can ask to be vaccinated in your leg, that has no effect on the efficacy.
Are you in doubt about whether or not to vaccinate/booster? We are happy to think along with you about this. Your GP can also advise. Additionally, a very helpful information site has been made: click HERE.